China's Shenzhen says chicken imported from Brazil tests positive for coronavirus

Clay Curtis
August 13, 2020

Authorities in China have found the novel coronavirus on the packaging of imported frozen seafood that arrived from the port city of Dalian, which recently battled a surge of cases, a local government said on Tuesday.

"The Yantai Economic and Technological Development Zone has sealed all related products, and disinfected all related enterprises and surrounding areas".

Since July, there have been seven instances where the virus was detected on the packaging of imported seafood products across the country, from Shandong province on the eastern coast to the municipality of Chongqing in the west, according to state media reports.

The discovery came a day after traces of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 were found on the packaging of frozen shrimp from Ecuador. China had then suspended imports from three Ecuadorean shrimp producers.

All of the nine new locally-transmitted cases were reported in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the National Health Commission said in its daily report.

How the virus entered the market in the first place is yet to be determined, the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention said in its latest update of the investigation in July. Consumers should be cautious when buying imported frozen foods and aquatic products, the government added.

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But health authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), have said the possibility of catching the virus through food is low.

The virus was found on the outer packaging of the frozen seafood.

It said everyone who handled the goods was under quarantine and had tested negative for the coronavirus.

China has been screening all meat and seafood containers coming into major ports since June, when a new outbreak of COVID-19 in the capital Beijing was linked to the city's Xinfadi seafood market.

A 68-year-old woman in the central Chinese province of Hubei, where the novel coronavirus first surfaced in December, tested positive on Sunday, six months after she was diagnosed with Covid-19 and recovered.

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